It looked like they were going to do it again! The United States Women’s Soccer Team was only four minutes away from winning their record setting third World Cup title. Eyes all across this country were glued to the television set anticipating a celebration like no other in women’s soccer history. What they saw instead may have been the most disappointing loss in the history of the U.S. women’s soccer team.
On two separate occasions, the United States looked like they were going to be victorious. The first was in regulation. The U.S. had a one goal lead with nine minutes left, only to let Japan tie up the game. In the extra time period, the U.S. again looked as though they would hoist the World Cup trophy. With four minutes left to play in the extra period and the United States clinging to a 2-1 lead, Japan did it again; they tied up the game in the closing minutes of play and sent the Women’s World Cup final to penalty kicks. Unfortunately, for the U.S., their luck ran out. Japan beat the United States on penalty kicks securing a marvelous run to the World Cup title. For the U.S. all that was left was what might have been.
Anyone who watched this match knows that the United States should have won. They completely dominated the majority of the match. Regrettably, they fell short because of missed opportunities. In the first half, the U.S. had several opportunities to score and put the game away. Instead, they missed those opportunities and allowed Japan to stay in the game and eventually win. I believe when our girls look back on this loss, they will be reminded of all their missed opportunities.
I’m afraid that many of us do exactly the same thing every day of our lives. We miss opportunities that could impact and change the outcome of something far more important than a soccer game. We miss opportunities that could change the outcome of people’s lives. The apostle Paul said, “So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith” (Galatians 6:10). Paul stressed to the church at Galatia the importance of making the most of opportunities to do good.
Every morning we wake up to a new day, we have multiple opportunities to do things for others. Maybe it is something small like being kind to them, or asking them how they are doing. Perhaps it’s something bigger like helping them through a difficult time in their lives or teaching them the Gospel of Christ. It doesn’t matter whether or not we consider it big or small, when an opportunity presents itself, let’s make the most of that opportunity. We will never understand the impact our actions and words can have on the outcome of someone’s life until we are willing to take those opportunities and use them for good. I don’t want to look back over my life with regret and remember all the missed opportunities I had to change the outcome of someone’s life. I want to know that I made the most of those opportunities presented to me. Friends, let’s make the most of our opportunities, you never know, you may have an opportunity to affect someone’s eternal destiny.
Now that’s Something to Think About!